Hell

(also see “Armageddon”, “Guilt, shame, and anxiety”, “Plan of salvation”, and “Suffering, philosophy of”)

 

Pros of Mormonism from the perspective of the
Believer
Nonbeliever
Although Mormons do not believe in Hell per se, the concept that the wicked will be punished and that there is some sort of true justice in the world is very comforting.
 
It is a comforting thought for Mormons that God will not leave our souls in Hell, that spirit prison is only temporary, and that he has a kingdom of glory for virtually everyone. This speaks to the loving nature of God and is a great selling point of Mormonism.
 
Nonetheless, Jesus promises that we must suffer terrible sufferings if we do not repent. The weight of this can encourage us to be better people.
Compared to many of the other religions in the world, even nonbelievers will probably admit that Mormonism is good in that almost nobody has to stay in Hell, that God has a kingdom of glory for virtually everyone. This speaks to the loving nature of God and is a great selling point of Mormonism. It seems that most Mormons who leave Mormonism don’t end up in a church that preaches Hellfire and Damnation, possibly because they hold on to the idea that if there is a God he will find a way to save as many people as he can.
 
 
Cons of Mormonism from the perspective of the
Believer
Nonbeliever
Jesus promises that we must suffer terrible sufferings if we do not repent.  Scriptures abound that describe the wrath of God and receiving eternal punishment at his judgement bar. While this is a pro because it encourages us to do good, it’s also a con because it’s scary. The fact that Mormons don’t believe Hell is permanent doesn’t mean that thousands and thousands (millions?) of Mormons haven’t felt fear that God will punish them at one point or another. Again, this fear might be necessary to help us do good, but it’s a bitter pill nonetheless.
The nonbeliever is likely to not be attracted by a system that relies on the threats of Hell and damnation. Jesus promises that we must suffer terrible sufferings if we do not repent.  Scriptures abound that describe the wrath of God and receiving eternal punishment at his judgement bar. The fact that Mormons don’t believe Hell is permanent doesn’t mean that thousands and thousands (millions?) of Mormons haven’t felt fear that God will punish them at one point or another. To the nonbeliever, this fear is a harm that Mormonism and much of religion in general is committing. It is psychologically damaging. There is enough misery and suffering in this world already; why must we add more by inventing the wrath of an angry God?

 

Comments relating to your lived experience with Mormonism are welcome. Although it can be difficult to distinguish at times, please focus on how the church helps and harms rather than it being true vs untrue.

Top